The Emirates requires “influencers” to obtain a license to carry out advertising and promotional activities

From July 1, the United Arab Emirates will begin implementing a decision requiring social media influencers to obtain a license to carry out advertising and promotional activities, under penalty of financial sanctions.

In a statement, the Department of Economic Development of Abu Dhabi announced that this decision, which also concerns economic establishments, provides for the application of sanctions and penalties of up to 10,000 Emirati dirhams (approximately $2,700) and the closure of economic establishment.

The Department added that the licensing fee is 1,250 Emirati dirhams (approximately $340) for sole proprietorships, and 5,000 dirhams (approximately $1,360) for corporations. This decision is part of efforts to strengthen and create an ideal economic environment for business in the emirate of Abu Dhabi, to regulate this sector, and to protect consumer rights.

The Department clarified that failure to comply with regulations and conditions when collaborating with influencers and social media sites will expose influencers to sanctions and penalties ranging from 3,000 to 10,000 UAE Dirhams, and will result in closure of the economic establishment.

It was emphasized that a permit from the Emirates Media Council does not exempt social media influencers from the obligation to obtain the necessary licenses and authorizations from the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development to carry out advertising activities and promotion on websites, in order to avoid fines and sanctions imposed on offenders.

The Abu Dhabi Economic Development Department has called on all economic businesses and social media influencers to comply and commit to obtaining a license from the Department to carry out advertising and promotional activities on websites.

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